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British vote brings Palestinians one step closer to statehood

Although the vote by the British Parliament to recognize the state of Palestine is nonbinding, it adds momentum to the Palestinian push for statehood.
A passer-by carries a Union Flag umbrella past a pro-Palestine demonstration outside the  Houses of Parliament in London October 13, 2014.  British Prime Minister David Cameron will not take part in a parliamentary vote on whether the government should recognise Palestine as a state, his spokesman said on Monday ahead of a debate designed to raise the political profile of the issue.  REUTERS/Luke MacGregor  (BRITAIN - Tags: POLITICS) - RTR4A005

After debate ended Oct. 13 in Westminster and the votes were cast, 274 British members of Parliament (MPs), representing major parties as well as diverse communities, passed a motion calling on their government to recognize the state of Palestine.

"The vote is symbolic, but the discussion is essential," Manuel Hassassian, the Palestinian ambassador to the United Kingdom, had told Al-Monitor on Oct. 12, the day before the motion by the Labor Party backbencher Grahame Morris was slated for a debate and vote. "It is not a binding vote, but it will send a strong message to the British government and to the world."

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